Liberal Russian news network TV Rain restarts operations with EU broadcast licence

Dozhd (TV Rain), the liberal-leaning Russian TV station that was forced to shut down in March, has restarted operations from outside of the country.

The youth-oriented channel was often critical of Russian authorities, and was shut down by the Kremlin earlier this year when special forces stormed the building. The channel, which had been branded a foreign agent by the government in 2021, had been accused of inciting protests and disrupting the public by telecommunications regulator Roskomnadzor when it refused to back the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Specifically, the regulator said that the channel was spreading “deliberately false information about the actions of Russian military personnel”.

Months later, the broadcaster has stated that it has received a European Union broadcasting licence and will operate from studios in Latvia, France, the Netherlands and Georgia. 

In addition to being carried across the EU, TV Rain will stream on YouTube – the only way that Russians will be able to watch the channel.

In a Twitter thread announcing the comeback, TV Rain said: “After we were forced off the air on March 3rd, we managed to keep our team together and remain true to our core principles. Just as we have over the last 12 years, we will talk about news and events without censorship or manipulation. The return of TV Rain on the air will be a step by step process. First, we will resume broadcasting the news. Later, we will bring back the talk shows. After that, we will begin producing more content. We plan to launch several new projects this autumn. Due to the repressive laws and military censorship adopted in Russia, we were forced to leave our homes.

“Today, more than ever, the citizens of Russia must have access to independent, truthful information. Therefore, it is especially important for us to return to the air. We, like tens of millions of Russians, want the war to end, and for Russia to return from the path of catastrophe and destruction to the path of development. We want to use our platform to unite those who think the same way as we do, no matter where these people are: everyone has their own reasons to stay in Russia, or to leave.”

Tags: Dozhd, TV Rain

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